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Discussion Starter #1
I have an engine code P1520 which states:
radiator fan relay 1 circuit high output

Any advice on how to repair this? I cannot find a reference for the location of the relay, as this is where I plan to begin by replacing the relay.

Has anyone had this code show up? Any suggestions will help

Thanks, I am new to the forum and new to the outback. I love it!!

2000 Outback Limited
2.5L AT
 

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2001 VDC/SC One of a Kind
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Ignore the white circle in the photo. I edited it for someone else but you can still see the legend. The sub fan relay is with AC. Check the operation of the fans also.

There is a chance that you may have to replace the ECM. Just giving you a heads up.

No other codes?
 

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money pit

Ignore the white circle in the photo. I edited it for someone else but you can still see the legend. The sub fan relay is with AC. Check the operation of the fans also.

There is a chance that you may have to replace the ECM. Just giving you a heads up.

No other codes?
Couldn't he reflash the ecm? Which tranny is in the car?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Not sure about reflashing the ecm.

Automatic tran.

ALSO: if i do the ECM replacement, whats involved? unplug old, then plug in new
 

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The computer can be reflashed easily but that's not the issue. There is more likely a burned circuit on the board which means repair or replace. If a salvage ECM is found, then it will need to be from an identical car. You may or may not need to have it reflashed to your car.

If the relay is not bad, then there is a bad connection or short in the harness. If the relay is bad, its in the ECM also.

Do your fans operate with the code? Do they work if you reset? Check the fuses, also. If you need a wiring diagram, PM me so I get notification while I'm at the shop and I'll post it.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The fan does work, both before and after the reset. I'm wanting to know the plan to go about fixing this.
1.replace relay (where to find the replacement?)
2.if this doesn't fix the DEL then replace the ECM. (just unplug old and plug in new ECM of same year outback??)

Thanks for the help and any suggestions are helpful
 

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If both fans are running with the light on or off then the relays are good and the motors are good. You could replace the relays and see what happens. they are cheap enough and can be picked up at any parts store. See the pics in post 2 above. That relay box is on the left side fender behind the battery.

Need to check the plugs at the ECM for corrosion, looseness. Could also be a broken wire inside the harness.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Great advice...I'll check to see if BOTH fans are running. Will also check out the ECM for corrosion. I'll update back soon and let you know what I see.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
2013-05-25T16-17-09_0.jpg

2013-05-25T16-17-09_1.jpg
alright....found some electrical work that has been done. I just bought this car and its complete history is unknown.
the pictures are above. The additional fuse is a 20A and connects power to the fans, both. also of note is the absence of the relay. now I guess im not sure where to go from here. The power connector for the washer fluid motor is also being used in this circuit. I suppose a wiring diagram with details of the fuse panel connections would help, but beyond that I think the initial problem may have been the ECM and this was done to bypass the issue and allow the fan to always run.


thoughts??
 

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Here you go.

Download it and open it. Power management, Performance and the fan circuits.

Also, a pin diagram for the ECM plugs.

Without knowing what frame of mind the previous owner was in or the shop "mechanic" that did this, its a guessing game. Could be an ECT error, could be the ECM, could be anything that kept the fans from running.

Options:

Get a couple of relays, delete the extra power splice for the fans, clear the codes and see what happens. 2 drive cycles to set a code. If it comes back, further testing. One thing to keep in mind, if the fans don't operate, no cooling of the coolant. But, you can check fan operation with the AC turned on. Both should operate. Since just one is operating now, its either the only one hot wired or the other motor finally burned up from running all the time.

OR, Get the DVOM out, FreeSSM and a cable would help, and start testing. One portion of the testing needs the relays activated via the ECM to check voltage at the ECM. The rest are just testing the relays and if failed, replace relays and ECM.

Ignition off, connect test connector. Ignition on connect SSM and select "compulsory valve operation check" and activate the fan relay. Backprobe the ECM on terminal 3 (see pin chart) in B134. If voltage changes between 0-10V, system returned to normal. Check for open or poor contact at ECM connector.

If voltage doesn't change, turn the ign off, remove both relays, disconnect test connector. Ign on, backprobe the ECM terminal 3 again. More than 10V, there's a short in the circuit. Find, repair then replace ECM.

If the voltage is less than 10V, ign off, main relay out, check resistance of the relay 1 & 3; if resistance is <1 ohm, replace relay & ECM. >1 ohm do the same test on the sub relay.

If the contacts on the ECM are good, replace the ECM.

Now, the kick here is that you don't have a relay in place. Some "shade tree" may have given up on trying to find why the fans weren't operating and removed the relays and hot wired the fans. Without the relays in place, you would get a P1520.

So, replace the relays and see what happens. If the ECM is bad, its bad regardless. If its not bad, the code won't come back, but you will need to find what is keeping the fans from operating.

Good Luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
as of right now, BOTH fans are running. here is the plan, let me know if this sounds like your option:
1. reference diagram and see exactly what has been highjacked.....then cut splices
2. return relays to the fuse panel
3.drive and see what happens
4. if the code returns, it must be the ECM. If so, i have seen multiple ECMS available for my year and model subaru.
 

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Do you have a state inspection process that includes OBDII testing? If so, you'll have to get it repaired eventually. If not, you'll have to check the ECM periodically for error codes other than the 1520 because the light will be on all the time. Also, there may be an issue with the ROM and you'll never have another code because the ECM won't be working in other areas either. Unless the ECM is opened up, you never know for sure what's been effected.

There is still a chance that the code is there because the relays are out, and the fan operation is being effected by a sensor on the engine. Like I said, I see some strange things come in the shop because someone rigged a system to work when they couldn't find a loose connection or bad ground. I had a Chevy in a couple weeks ago that someone wired the passenger lights to the driver lights. The high beam circuit ran the high beam lights and the low beam ran the DRL. Had a bad Multifunction switch and a blown fuse. But whoever did it either didn't know or didn't care and spent more time wiring the lights than if they had just changed the switch.

Safe side: Find the problem. Whether its a sensor issue or the ECM, it needs to function proper. You don't want it going stupid and damaging the transmission.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
So what I've seen so far... the extra fuse is controlling BOTH fans. It appears that both relays are still there according to the fuse panel diagram. I will try to reverse it all and get it back to original wiring. Hopefully that's all the issue is. Then reset the code at the local shop. Otherwise I will just consult my mechanic to do this wiring...im a bit concerned about this electronic stuff
 

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If you don't feel comfortable with a repair on your car, then yes, contract it out to someone who knows. I always hate going in behind a rigged wiring system. Especially one that has wires all over the place. (All my extra harnesses run together) It may be better to find an auto electrical shop over a "normal" shop unless the normal shop has an electrician. It's really a matter of checking plugs and the relays. If you have relays in place, you could pull them and test them. If they are bad, then you know it's the ECM.

Just a funny thought: It would be strange coincidence if you went to the same shop that did the splicing. Maybe you could get hold of the previous owner and ask questions.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Near St. Louis, MO. I just bought this outback for a great price over here, but also inherited its history. Considering what I paid, its well worth it all :)

QUESTION: if I get to the ECM replacement, does it need to be from an exact model/trim match (2000 outback LIMITED) or will any 2000 outback wagon work properly??

Also, what else needs to match....such as tranny, etc.??

Thanks for the help
 
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